-Femi Falana has tackled the presidency over the statement that members of the opposition are moving against service chiefs
-The senior lawyer said the presidency lacks the power to stop the protest over insecurity
- Falana advised that no Nigerian should be harassed during the protest
Nigeria's foremost human rights activist and lawyer, Femi Falana (SAN), on Sunday, February 16, said the presidency has no power to stop Nigerians from protesting peacefully over the call for the removal of all service chiefs following the increase of insecurity.
Falana stated this in reaction to a statement credited to President Muhammadu Buhari’s spokesperson, Mallam Garba Shehu. The senior special assistant to on media and publicity had noted that there’s a plot by a political class to move against all Nigerian service chiefs.
Nonetheless, the human rights activist warned the police against harassing an aggrieved Nigerian, Channels TV reports. He said: “The authorities of the Nigeria Police Force are urged not to harass aggrieved Nigerians for protesting against perceived injustice in the country.
“Nigerians have the fundamental right to demonstrate for or against the federal government without official fiat the Presidency has no power to stop any peaceful protest in the country.
In fact, the right to assemble and protest peaceful was won by the Nigerian people in the case of All Nigerian People’s Party v Inspector-General of Police (2008) 12 WRN 65.”
He went on to explain that the presidency without any evidence alleged that people working for Boko Haram are those who are calling for the replacement of the service chiefs.
Falana recalled that back in 2014, the All Progressives Congress (APC) leaders such as the president himself, minister of transportation Rotimi Amaechi and John Oyegun held a protest against insecurity during former President Goodluck Jonathan’s tenure.
In a related development, the Northern Youth Coalition (NYC) has asked President Muhammadu Buhari to resign from office as a result of the growing level of insecurity in the country. The group said it was high time the president left the office before the country's situation becomes similar to that of Somalia.
The group's national convener, Muhammed Ishaq, said in Abuja on Wednesday, February 12, that the security situation has worsened significantly so much that it is now similar to what was experienced during the administration of Buhari's predecessor, Goodluck Jonathan.
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